This forum vs the PE forum?


Well-Known Member
Hi Everyone,

So I am wondering about something..... I mainly hang out over here in the SA forum but I am noticing that I am missing pieces of folks stories and that a lot of folks are posting in the PE forum.... and that a lot of the issues in the PE forum are around substance abuse..... so I have been missing a lot and want to catch up..... so does it make sense to have two different forums? Just wondering what others think?



Well-Known Member
It's a tough call.

I thought we used to have a forum for pre-school kids? Not sure where that went. But the age groups were pre-school, school (to grade 12 / age 18), and "adult". With two special interest groups - Special Education, and Substance Abuse. Most of the time, Special Education applies to school kids - not always, but enough that it works.

But Substance Abuse... generally applies to age 11/12 and up (rare to see it before that). It's a real cross-over. Especially for kids with developmental / mental health issues. There are some unique things about SA, though. It's an area that tends to call for some tough choices for parents that are not faced if drugs are not involved.

Lots of us don't go by forum any more - we just go through the new posts. I'm finding parts of stories even show up on the FOO threads.


Well-Known Member

I almost never check out the Substance Abuse Forum. If the two forums were collapsed, I hope the PE forum is the one that continues. While substance use is a factor with my son, I do not see it as primary.


Well-Known Member
Most of the PE parents have SA issues. I noticed t hat people are starting to go there too and very few are posting on General. The board dynamics are changing.


Well-Known Member
We are getting fewer parents of younger kids right now. That may change again. So much depends on whether or not the search terms you use, come up with this site. I expect we will see more again at some point.

But... drug problems don't just affect complex kids, and not all complex kids end up into drugs. Drug abuse problems are a bit more in the general population, which increases the chances of somebody finding us. Especially in those... teen years.


Well-Known Member
SA is definitely a factor with my son as well...but not the primary one anymore, though it started out that way...I started out on that board, too. Now I'm primarily on the PE board.


Active Member
I don't think I've ever been on the PE board. I've seen it of course, but wasn't sure what it was exactly.

People who have never dealt with full blown addiction do not understand. This seemed like the best judgement free zone.


Well-Known Member
I think that while many messages could just as easily belong to either one, there really is a difference. While many kids who bring us to PE have also substance abuse issues, they are often comorbid or even just complication. While lots of challenges are the same, there are some fundamental differences too.

I for example really love to hear the stories where some of our kids have gotten on recovery, are clean and sober and doing so well. But I also need to recognize that will not happen to my kid. That he can be clean, and he actually isn't abusing substances or active addict right now, but it will not solve fundamental issues with him. He can be clean and still there is that fear that phone will ring and it is someone telling my kid has killed himself. Or that he is in the hospital and complete mess, self hurting and catatonic. That while being clean is great, it is not enough.

This difference also brings it's own flavour to being a parent and relating the situations our kids have put themselves into.


Well-Known Member
I do see a point to having two different forums as others have mentioned. I think the problem for me is that when we added the SA forum that is where I hung out as I think substances are my sons unavoidable problem, although I think he has other issues as well.... but without dealing with the SA we cant deal with the other issues.

The problem may be mine... in that I didnt keep following the PE forum and so now feel behind and a bit lost in peoples stories... so now I am reading through the timeline and hopefully can catch up on peoples situations.


Well-Known Member
The SA forum was begun because the issues of substance abuse were getting lost in the general discussion being held in the PE forum. I understand that many parents in the PE forum are also dealing with SA but I never felt my issues with SA were being covered adequately for me in PE. There is a lot of overlap for some and therefore those members may feel more comfortable in PE.

I am rather protective of my fellow SA members. Real substance abuse (not experimentation or pot phases) is one of those things that only a parent of an addict can understand and we do try to be judgment free. Itis sometimes a life and death issue. I don't mean to sound dismissive of any other problem or forum, they are all equally important in their own right.


Well-Known Member
I always come here to SA. I don't wanna miss anything important in PE. I've had excellent support & advice here. I appreciate this forum so much!


Well-Known Member
I check both of them every time I'm on the site. It's what I need to validate my actions of both his substance abuse and acting like a jerk...and me wanting NO part of any of it.


Well-Known Member
Staff member
I believe that my daughter's problems are primarily substance abuse based so I feel more comfortable on the SA forum. Those of us with loved ones with substance abuse issues have problems that go beyond just failure to launch or some of the other problems faced by parents in the PE forum. We are dealing with physical addiction and often detox, jail or hospitalization.

I also agree that many of the children of SA posters are still in the gray zone between adolescent and adult (at least mentally) so they don't quite fit in with the PE category.

My suggestion is to visit both forums and see which is a better fit for you. Or, visit both on a regular basis.